9 Basic Guidelines for Media Relations in a Crisis

Posted February 24, 2009 by lindsayecameron
Categories: Uncategorized

1- Accept Responsibily

2- Show concern

3- DON’T LIE!

4- Don’t hypothesize

5- Respond to all media needs

6- Feed the hog (give information to the media)

7- Develop key messages (talking points)

8- Dramatize the company’s responsibility

9-Don’t say “No Comment”

PRSA Real World Conference in Atlanta

Posted February 23, 2009 by lindsayecameron
Categories: Uncategorized

I was fortunate enough to be able to attend the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) Real World Conference in Atlanta, GA on February 20, 2009. I had such a valuable experience while at this conference, I want to share it with everyone. At the opening of this conference, three representatives from CNN were present disucssing social media and the effects it had on the presidential election in 2008 compared to the election in 2004. It was interesting to see how times have changed and how public relations specifically had an effect on this. Social media is exploding!! Social media sites including: WordPress, Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, PROpenMic, and LinkedIn are becoming more popular and you here about these sites everywhere now! They posed questions regarding journalism such as, “Where is print journalism going?” and “What are the effects of citizen journalism? Good or bad?” Some of these questions really make you think about the industry of public relations because it is so important to see where the industry is going so you can go with them.

I was educated about public relations internships available in the Atlanta area. This was extremely beneficial to me because that is where I want to go after graduation in May 2009. I had such an amazing experience networking with public relations professionals from Atlanta. I was fortunate enough to here professionals discuss many different areas of public relations including: non-profit, hospitality, travel, tourism, corporate social responsibility, and agencies. This helped me the most. I actually went into the conference being almost dead set on one specific type of public relations and left feeling completely different. I had no idea this conference would have such an impact on me, but trust me, I am very grateful.

Networking with educated and experienced public relations professionals was my favorite part. Everyone was warm, welcome, and willing to talk to you about anything. I learned skills regarding resume writing, cover letters, interview skills, and how exactly to network. I recommend attending this conference to anyone who is a PR major (junior or senior). It takes place once a year, every Spring semester. If you weren’t there this year, make sure you remember next year. I finally got the opportunity to see the light into public relations and you don’t want to miss that, I promise.

Crisis Blog 1: Michael Phelps

Posted February 7, 2009 by lindsayecameron
Categories: Uncategorized

Olympic gold metalist, Michael Phelps, had a photo surface that was not particularly flattering, some may say. The picture was of Phelps smoking supposedly marijuana out of a bong. Due to the fact that he is a public figure, he released this statement after the picture had made way into the eyes of many fans of his:

“I engaged in behavior which was regrettable and demonstrated bad judgment. I’m 23 years old and despite the successes I’ve had in the pool, I acted in a youthful and inappropriate way, not in a manner people have come to expect from me. For this, I am sorry. I promise my fans and the public it will not happen again.”

From a public relations standpoint there are components of this statement that I agree and disagree with. From Kathleen Fearn-Banks book, “Crisis Communications: A Casebook Approach” she discusses Apologia Theory. Within this theory, Fearn-Banks goes on to describe three different approaches to responding to a situation such as the picture of Michael Phelps being released. The three approaches are redefinition, dissociation, and conciliation. Phelps used the conciliation approach which states an individual should admit what he/she did as well as apologize for his/her actions.

Phelps did indeed admit that the picture was of him and he was smoking marijuana. He also did apologize to the public and promise that this would not happen again. However, I do not agree with what he said when he stated, “I’m 23 years old and despite the successes I’ve had in the pool, I acted in a youthful and inappropriate way”. I do not believe that his age should be used for an excuse for his actions. He understands that he is a public figure and a role model whom should behave like one. The rest of his statement to the public was honest and genuine. Due to his decisions and actions, Phelps lost his endorsement with Kellogg’s and Rosetta Stone. Overall, his statement was effective because he took responsibility for his actions but modifications could have been made to make this more successful.

My Social Media Policy

Posted December 4, 2008 by lindsayecameron
Categories: Uncategorized

Tags: , , ,

1. Connecting: Introduce yourself and tell me why you want to connect

Personally, I would like an introduction from new followers within social media. Most of the time, when I have been connecting with people from different social media websites, I have not actually met these people face-to-face so having an introduction would be extremely helpful. This introduction would inform me of their name, what they do, and what company or corporation they work for. Having individuals state why they would like to connect with me would also be helpful even if there is not a particular reason why.

2. Follow, add, friend: How to handle your friends in social media

My procedure on friending can depend on the social media outlet. For example, on Twitter I have the followers that I follow on a regular basis but at time I notice that individuals following me are sometimes greater than the number of people I am following. Every so often, I look at this number and review the list of people I have following me. At this time, I see people who are following me that I don’t personally know and I decide if I want to follow them in return. If they have an interest in my major (public relations) or have similarities with me, then I follow them. You can always stop following people that you are not interested in if you chose to do so.

3. Privacy, boundaries and safety: Better safe than sorry

I am certain boundaries depending on the individual and the social network. For example, on facebook, my profile is set to private. No one can view my profile unless I am friends with them. I recently went through my facebook and deleted individuals that I did not know. Because I had never done this before, I found a lot of people that I did not actually know and never conversed with. After doing that, I knew that the people I had on my friends list were only people that I was close with. If I get a friend request from people that I don’t want them to see my whole profile, I put certain privacy settings in place. For example, I had a mom of a friend of mine ask me to be her friend and I accepted but I made it possible for her to not look at my wall posts or pictures for my own personal reasons.

4. Signal to noise: Pretty easy going

I honestly don’t have strong feelings about frequent updates on individuals status or tweets. If I am uninterested I can either ignore their posts or choose not to follow them. Usually, if there is a specific function going on, I know and understand there will a lot of messages distributed on this topic. I either skim through the messages if I have an interest, or simply ignore them.

5. Personal data and sharing: Who I want to connect with

I want to connect with people that I have similar interests with. I enjoy being connected to my friends so I can talk to them through social networks, mostly because of the convince. On a professional level, I am interesting in connecting to people who share the same goals as me. Students close to graduation majoring in Communication or Public Relations and have hopes of getting a job after school. I also like to connect with professionals in the workforce already. They have a unique view of the industry and can provide me with helpful hints on what to expect and what situations I may be presented with.

6. My networking needs and uses: Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter

My use on different social networks changes dramatically depending on the website. I use facebook strictly for my friends. I talk to my friends, upload pictures, and just have personal fun on this site. I do not use facebook for any professional or academic reasons. To me, Twitter is a mix between personal and professional use. I have some friends on Twitter that I converse with and other people that I am connected with on a professional level. These are PR professionals that can offer me a view into public relations. Linked In is a site that I only use for professional reasons. I put my work experience on this website and connect with people that are in the work force and are strictly professionals.

7. Picture Policy: Be Professional

One piece of advice I have to offer pertains to your profile picture. First, Don’t ever put private pictures on the internet if you don’t want people to see them. They will end up seeing them. Also, make your picture appropriate to the social media website. For facebook, because I use this for my friends, it is appropriate to have a picture of me and my girlfriends as my profile picture. But that picture would not be appropriate to use on LinkedIn or Twitter because those sites I use more for a professional atmosphere.

8. Be Aware: Keep an eye on what other people do

Although you can’t always control what other people do on social networking sites, it won’t hurt to keep watch on it. Especially on facebook, you do not have control over what certain people post of your wall or even pictures they upload with you in them. If you keep a conscious effort to look at what other people are uploading, this can help you. You may have time to delete inappropriate comments or delete pictures that you do not want associated with your specific page.

Comparing a News Release to a News Story

Posted December 1, 2008 by lindsayecameron
Categories: Uncategorized

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This is the news release

SEATTLE; May 7, 2007 – Starbucks Coffee Company (Nasdaq: SBUX) today announces that by the end of 2007, Starbucks will eliminate the use of artificial trans fats in food and beverages in all stores in the continental U.S., Alaska and Canada.


“No longer using artificial trans fats in products sold in our stores allows us to take out ingredients like partially hydrogenated oils that have no health benefit, while retaining high quality and great tasting natural ingredients,” said Denny Marie Post, svp of Global Food and Beverage for Starbucks. “Customers will always have a wide variety of choices at Starbucks to fit their needs and what they desire. While some products will have small amounts of naturally occurring trans fats from quality ingredients like butter, every choice will be free of artificial trans fat ingredients.”


As part of our work on trans fats, Starbucks reached out to several recognized health and nutrition experts to get their opinions and thoughts on the best approach to take toward this important health issue.


“This is a great idea because the scientific evidence indicates that industrial trans fats are more harmful than any other type of fat and can be removed from foods – it’s a win-win situation,” said Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian, MD, DrPH, Assistant Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology at Harvard Medical School and Harvard School of Public Health.


By the end of this year, Starbucks plans to stop using artificial trans fats in food and beverages in all company-operated and licensed stores in the continental U.S., Alaska and Canada. Once we’ve completed this work, every item in these stores – whether it’s a new product introduction or an old favorite – will be made without any artificial trans fat. Work is also underway to begin the removal of artificial trans fats from products in markets outside North America.


Product nutrition information is available online at http://www.starbucks.com.


About Starbucks

Starbucks Coffee Company provides an uplifting experience that enriches people’s lives one moment, one human being, one extraordinary cup of coffee at a time. To share in the experience, visit http://www.starbucks.com.

Contact Information:

Brandon Borrman

Starbucks Coffee Company

(206) 318-7100

press@starbucks.com


This is how the news story appeared in the paper

Starbucks to rid products of artificial trans fats

Java giant will only use naturally occurring fats, like butter, whipped cream

SEATTLE – Starbucks Corp. announced Monday that it will cut artificial trans fats out of food and drinks in its stores in the continental United States, Alaska and Canada by the end of the year.

The coffee retailer isn’t about to quit selling its whipped cream-topped Frappuccino shakes or rich baked sweets, but said it will only use ingredients with naturally occurring fats, like butter, whole milk, eggs and whipped cream.

“No longer using artificial trans fats in products sold in our stores allows us to take out ingredients like partially hydrogenated oils that have no health benefit, while retaining high quality and great tasting natural ingredients,” Denny Marie Post, senior vice president of Starbucks’ global food and beverage unit, said in a statement.

Listed on food labels as partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, trans fats are thought to boost “bad” cholesterol and decrease “good” cholesterol. They have attracted attention from health regulators, most notably in New York City, where they have been banned in restaurants and eateries.

Starbucks joins a growing list of American companies shedding trans fats from their menus. Yum Brands Inc.’s chains KFC and Taco Bell recently switched to a trans-fat free oil. Wendy’s International Inc., McDonald’s Corp. and Burger King Holdings Inc. also are phasing out trans fats.

Starbucks started ridding its U.S. and Canadian stores of trans fats in January. Company spokesman Brandon Borrman said trans fats will eventually be eliminated from its Hawaii stores, but that it will not likely happen by the end of the year because jurisdiction for the state is being shifted from Starbuck’s international division to its domestic unit.

Starbucks also said Monday that it is working to rid trans fats from stores in markets outside North America, but Borrman said no timeline has been set.

How does the news release compare to the news story that was published?

Within the contents of the news story, there was the same information that was listed on the news release. There was a quote that was the same used in the final news story. Although, on the news story, there was more information and details included. The reason that more details were published could have been that they used the contact information at the bottom of the press release to communicate to the company for details. Also, the information could have come from research done by the reporter. Overall, the facts from the press release still were published in the news article and it was a great story.

How is Starbucks involved in their Communities?

Posted December 1, 2008 by lindsayecameron
Categories: Uncategorized

Tags: ,

Starbucks is very involved within their communities. A recent way that Starbucks displayed their involvement within the community was on election day. On November 4th, if you voted in the election, all you had to do was come into any Starbucks and tell them that you voted. In return for doing so, Starbucks would award you for voting and give you a free tall cup of coffee. This was a wonderful idea because it not only encouraged voters to go out and vote but also rewarded them for doing so. There was a video posted on their website that made individuals aware of the reward for voting. Also, Starbucks on Twitter had sent out tweets stating this information. One of the most important ways that Starbucks made the public aware of this free cup of coffee opportunity, is to play the same video posted on their website during a commerical break of Saturday Night Live. Because that show has so much effect on the election overall, this was a wonderful marketing strategy.

Another way that Starbucks is involved with their communities is within their project Starbucks V2V. This is an on-line community were their consumers can sign on and discuss things that they personally believe should be taken care of in their local community. This simply allows other users to view different ideas and help out where they live. The customers take this ideas and actually put these community service projects into action. This is getting many Starbucks customers to unite as well as better their community at the same time.

All information found at these sites:

http://www.starbucks.com

http://www.v2v.net/starbucks

Career Opportunities

Posted December 1, 2008 by lindsayecameron
Categories: Uncategorized

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There are many career opportunities at Starbucks Coffee Company and locating these jobs to view availability is an extremely easy process. One way to search for a jobs at Starbucks is going to the Starbucks website and clicking the “about us” tab. When this opens up on the left hand side of the page, you can see a list of other options. This is where you click on “career center” and then you can select “job search”. This section of the website allows you to see all jobs that are available for The United States, Canada, Quebec, The United Kingdom, Ireland, and Amsterdam.

After you have decided on a location where you would like to look for a job at Starbucks. You then have the option to search for jobs within specific departments. If you select the “Communications” department, you then have the option to choose “Communications, Executive, or Technical Writing”. If you are interested in “Marketing” you have the option to choose “Brand Management, Category Management, Executive, Generalist, Marketing Implementation, and Marketing Research”.

This process makes searching for a job at Starbucks very easy because you can select which areas you are interested in which limits the search results. If you choose the “United States” option for location, after you select your department of choice, you can even select a state that you are specifically interested in. This helps categorize jobs that are offered with this company. There are numerous job opportunities in the Communications and Marketing departments within Starbucks. Also, because this is an international company that is located in 43 countries, there are many opportunities for employment all over the world, and their website makes this process quite simple.

All information found at this site:

http://www.Starbucks.com